Friday, December 28, 2012

New Year’s Eve and all that I loathe.

I hate this time of the year. Some people might be Christmas Grinchs, but not me; I love everything about the Christmas season; the carols, the gift-wrapping, the careful cooking of timeless recipes old and new.  It’s this time of the year, between the afterglow of good giving, and the dreaded New Years Eve, that I loathe.

Expectations of another wonderful year ahead  (what was so great about this year, huh?) and the party to end all parties, New Years Eve looms like a zombie in front of me,  arms outstretched with gnashing teeth and dead eyes.  Ok, maybe not, but it’s not a well built young man in nappies with a golden 2013 around his neck, either.  It’s the weight of other people’s hopes and dreams, unrealistic and simplistic; that drag me down.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve given many NYE parties for my friends and family. In fact, almost every year without exception, and that’s the problem. Can’t they invite us back, and do their own party in their own house, to return the favour?  For once, wouldn’t it be nice to be a guest in someone else’s home; to simply wander into a bottle shop, purchase some yummy champers, and bring a plate of cheese artfully plopped next to the biscuits. All care, no attention.  Turn up the music.

Lots of our friends own swimming pools, how hard would it be to ask us to come around and bask beside their pool, like the photos I see on their Facebook pages?

No bothering about what theme for the night, no decorations, no amazing food spreads. I recall one year I cooked not one but two whole reef fish, borrowing a portable oven from a local chef. It was stunning but I hadn’t realised the bins wouldn’t be emptied until the following week.  The leftover stench nearly killed us.
It must be us, not them. I don’t get it. You’d think by now I’ve have some friendship credit with my loved and dear mates, but apparently not. So this year, this wrung out, gloriously used up, sucked dry, wretched, withered and exhausted year,  will see me parked in front of the telly, feet up, a glass resting in my hands, watching the fireworks.

Today I am taking my resentful, sulking self to escape to the coast, packing the leftover ham and wondering how many of the 25 Creative Ways with Christmas Ham recipes I can actually remember. Before leaving to drive north, I’ve washed the sheets, sprayed the weeds and put the bins out; I’ve been a good girl, surely I deserve a treat?
All that’s left to do is pack the house and leftovers, hump them down to the car; somehow pack everything in; including the cat, and drive for two hours in traffic to repeat the scenario at the other end, shoving bits of almost recognisable leftovers into the beach house fridge. It will probably die of shock; it was making weird noises and rattles last time we were up.

Wherever New Years Eve finds you, have a lovely happy time, and remember your friends. 

I won’t be.

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